TikTok’s newest restriction creates conversation


TikTok recently announced they will start setting a 60 minute time limit for users on their app. 

First of all, what is TikTok? TikTok is a “short-form video hosting service” according to Wikipedia. It’s primarily used for fun and entertainment by teens. It could also be used to promote businesses, share music, spread news, make other content, and more.

At the beginning of March, TikTok announced that they will be implementing a screen time limit for minors on the app. If the user’s account is registered as younger than 18 years old they will have to manually click if they’d like to continue on the app after about an hour. This is being done in an attempt to reduce the amount of time underage people spend on the app scrolling.

This is a real screenshot of the new screen time pop up. After spending more than an hour on the app, the next time you open it the following will show: a chart showing how much time you spent on the app that week, a message suggesting you set a time limit “so you can balance your time on TikTok with exploring other things you love,” and a big red button that says “turn on” which will set the suggested 60 minute time limit. You can opt out of this by clicking the small white “x” in the corner. (Ethic News image)

The app has shown to create some negative outcomes. One of them being spending too much time on your phone. The app has endless content for a user to consume and there has previously been no limit or restriction to how much content is being fed to users. TikTok has also created a space where the media fluctuates intensely with one scroll, giving users constant dopamine with every video. With this being said, the amount of videos you consume by the hour could be hundreds which helps create a constant crave for dopamine within the real world.

It has been admitted by teens that they pay far too much attention to social media, exceeding a healthy amount. With this update it is believed individuals will be able to prioritize all general work.

Desiree O. a high school student says “Some students think they spend too much time on tiktok and don’t focus on what they need to be done to be doing or getting done offline.”

TikTok is not all bad as it has also sparked some positive impacts. With the app’s unique algorithm, news is easier to share, small businesses can reach new audiences, and more people can connect with others and find and create their own communities. TikTok is an app to collaborate and be creative and it has shown to do so.

“TikTok really connects people who have similar interests and helps them grow with each other through their videos,” Xiomara S. a junior in high school states.

“[TikTok] can spread quick news and other information that may be missed on TV,” says Paige S. a junior in high school. 

With this, there were a few mixed reactions upon hearing the screen time announcement. Many teens thought this update will be helpful in staying focused on other responsibilities. While some people were irritated and were thinking about deleting the app all together to avoid the pop up. A few teens also think it might not even make that big of a difference. 

A high school student named Esha says, “People are going to get irritated. Like if I had to deal with that I would just delete that app which maybe some people might.”

Xiomara S. a junior in high school says, “I feel like the screen time for TikTok really won’t change much since you can opt out of the screen time with a passcode and just continue to watch videos.”

Feature image: A screenshot displays the view Tik Tok users under 18 see after an hour of Tik Tok scrolling. (Ayeisha Fordham/ Ethic News)

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